Cohesion spending in Europe lies at the very heart of the growth agenda. It is one of the primary instruments available to the Union to drive investment and to promote growth and jobs in the years ahead, as we strive towards meeting the Europe 2020 goals of smart, sustainable and inclusive economic growth. The Irish experience of Cohesion funding has been very positive, with Cohesion policy playing an important role in the development of Ireland’s economy.

In the context of the agreement on the EU’s Multiannual Financial Framework (MFF), the Irish Government was successful in securing €1.2 billion of Cohesion policy funding for the period 2014-2020.   It should be noted that this represents an increase of 8% in real terms over the 2007-2013 programming period, at a time when the overall EU budget for Cohesion policy was cut by 8%.  Of this €1.2 billion, some €951 million is for European Regional Development Fund (ERDF) and European Social Fund (ESF) co-funded programmes in Ireland, with the balance being devoted to European Territorial Cooperation (ETC) programmes, including the Ireland/Wales INTERREG Programme, the Northern Ireland PEACE Programme, the Ireland/Northern Ireland/West of Scotland INTERREG Programme and a number of smaller transnational programmes in which Ireland participates.

The funding priorities identified for Ireland’s Structural Funds programmes take account of the Europe 2020 Strategy of Smart, Inclusive and Sustainable Growth and the National Reform Programme. They include promoting jobs and growth; combating unemployment and social exclusion; promoting R&D and ICT investment and the competitiveness of the business sector; and promoting an environmentally-friendly and resource-efficient economy.

DPER Circular 08/2015 National Eligibility rules for Expenditure co-financed by the ERDF under Ireland’s Partnership Agreement 2014-2020

DPER Circular 13/2015 – Management and Control Procedures for the European Structural and Investment Funds Programmes 2014-2020

Information and Communication guidelines 2014-2020

Partnership Agreement Ireland 2014-2020

Comhaontú Comhpháirtíochta 2014-2020

EIB Report on Financial Instruments and Social Housing

Public consultation Ireland-Wales Cooperation Programme 2014-2020:

http://wales.gov.uk/consultations/businessandeconomy/ireland-wales-cooperation-2014-2020/

Public consultation Draft Border Midland & Western Regional Operational Programme 2014-2020

http://www.bmwassembly.ie

Public consultation Draft Southern & Eastern Regional Operational Programme 2014-2020

http://www.seregassembly.ie

Special EU Programmes Body

http://www.seupb.eu

Public consultation: Strategic Environmental Assessment:  Environmental Report, Ireland-Wales Cooperation Programme 2014-2020

http://wales.gov.uk/consultations/environmentandcountryside/irelandwalessea/